IEMs vs Headphones for gaming

Title says it al at the same price range (lets say 200,500
And 1000) which device would preform better at imaging, clarity, soundseperation and detail retrieval(these are the most important for gaming right?).
Figured the IEM section should have the most knowledge about this matter.

I see alot of pro player use IEMs what do they offer what headphones cant or is it just the isolation?

Can’t answer the question but there are a few iem manufacturers that make dedicated gaming sets like AAW…


Thanks for the reply these look amazing. But doesnt a non gaming labeled IEM preform better as this is the case with headphones?

Still hope someone with experience could awnser my question for gaming only which would preform better at a competitive scene?

“Better” would be subjective and the difference is solely based on preference and opinion. They use them in pro scenes due to the added isolation much like when you see them wear a closed back over the iems its usually to play white noise to completely close out the sound around them. Headphones work just fine and you only need a tournament setup in most extreme cases. IEMS and Headphones both work and it boils down to preference, comfort requirements, and isolation

So you would say one doesnt do a better job than the other at specific task like pin pointing enemy footsteps in increments of 5° rather than 30°? Or maby at hearing footsteps when shells and explosives are flying around?

They tend to actually have the over ears as either solely isolation, and they don’t play anything, or for just their game sounds. Then their communications come through with IEMs as for professional players, call outs tend to be more useful than game sounds. Then they have a third pair around their neck which they just use the microphone on

IEMs are usually much more intimate, so will have less of a soundstage compared to over ears. Soundstage is what is necessary for games to sound expansive and allow you to pinpoint sounds around you.
As long as you don’t buy into gimmicks like 5.1 or 7.1 surround headphones for games you will be fine.

If you are in a true competitive scene, you would use what your sponsors give you anyway and you have no option to change that unless you don’t have sponsors.
If you are streaming or playing heavily at home then open backs such as the Sennheiser 58x are very good cheap over ears for gaming.
If you are playing LAN then I would recommend closed backs so other people don’t interfere with you

eh? Last I checked they actually play white noise to those headphones to completely isolate themselves and have the iem play the game sound. Either way, not necessary outside of tournaments and headphones are better like you said due to soundstage. Shell out at most about $300 and your fine on a good set of cans less you want some high grade amp and dac and even then you can buy like a fiio or sound blaster for cheap

Sometimes they do, but when I was more into gaming a few years back and I attended shows and spoke to plenty of pros they said they used them for isolation only. Maybe that has changed

Probably, back then it was simple all you would see is just gamer headsets at the venues and tournaments. I guess whatever makes it fair game.

So you wouldnt say one is better than the other for gaming? So neither iems or headphones are a winner in terms of preformance?

Well, from personal experience and of plenty people I know, we almost exclusively prefer over ear. They allow for wider soundstage and boomier bass, both adding to better immersion.

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Headphones is far better than iems for gaming the inherent wider Soundstage allows for more space for putting bad guys around you. But if you don’t have much choice due to comfort or budget iems can do a good job. Cause at the end of the day sound performance doesn’t really determine how good you are at a game as longs you can kinda tell where someone is it’s all up to you ability to flick or react.

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Thank you finally an awnser!

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Yeah i know it doesnt make a person better but it might give that slight advantage to take the win. Thanks alot for the awnser been looking al over the web for an awnser without luck. Made me very happy knowing that headphones are the better choice no more doubt.